July, 2014

Living on Borrowed
Oxygen…

On Having a Separate Self:

We Can’t Really Live With Someone If We Can’t Live Without Them, No Matter How Much We Believe We Love Them

Living on Borrowed Oxygen
We all need to develop a separate self with good personal boundaries. What does it mean to have good personal boundaries? It means having a distinct self with a sense of who we are individually. When absent or deficient, this easily overlooked core ingredient in relationships makes it difficult to work with all the other ingredients. Without this ingredient, we’re living on what I call “borrowed oxygen,” with the other person becoming in a sense, our “must have it” oxygen supply. If you leave me, I’ll be without oxygen. So it goes from joy-mode to survival-mode, with me having to hold on to you at any cost. Borrowing oxygen from others keeps us from breathing on our own and takes away our own empowered ability to fully inhale and exhale – to truly give and receive – love. This is a set-up that leaves us limited, dependent, clinging, demanding, and even dominating. Just check out figures #1 and #2 below. I even have a saying that goes, “We Can’t Really Live With Someone If We Can’t Live Without Them, No Matter How Much We Believe We Love Them.” We each need to have, and be, our own definitive oxygen supply, one that the sustenance of our being, of our own aliveness, provides. As with the oxygen on our planet, as with the aliveness in our being, there is plenty of what’s needed for each of us.

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